Nearly all beneficiaries have received cash aid, Duterte says in 10th report to Congress

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(FILE PHOTO)

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 1) — Nearly all families covered by the government's social amelioration program have received cash aid, according to President Rodrigo Duterte's 10th report to Congress on the government's COVID-19 response.

The President submitted the latest report to the Joint Congressional Oversight Committee on Monday, and it stated 17,579,395 beneficiaries of the social amelioration program (SAP) have received cash aid. It’s 121,319 more than the number stated in the previous report.

So far, 98 percent of beneficiaries have received emergency cash aid amounting to ₱99,349,702,750.02, according to the report.

The first tranche of the government's SAP initially covered 18 million low-income households, who were expected to receive ₱5,000 to ₱8,000 worth of assistance.

READ: Cash aid tops government's ₱353-B expenses for COVID-19 response

The SAP is one of the key provisions of the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act, which gave Duterte special budget powers to counter the pandemic.

The report also discussed the status of water and energy supply, saying "the country's supply of power and fuels remains sufficient."

"The major grids posted excess capacity over peak demand — Luzon at 17 percent (2,011 Megawatts), Visayas at 21 percent (512 MW), and Mindanao at 29 percent (767 MW). For the week, the highest peak demand for each grid was observed at 9,724 MW in Luzon (May 27), 1,958 MW in Visayas (May 21) and 1,870 MW in Mindanao (May 27)," it said.

It noted the National Power Corporation "reports the continued operation, maintenance, and adequacy of fuel inventory, manpower, transportation, and security of power plants and transmission line systems nationwide."

Water levels in major dams nationwide also remain high, with La Mesa Dam increasing to 76.31.

It did note, however, that even with the slight lowering of water levels in Angat reservoir (190.77 meters last week to 190.38 meters this week) and Ipo Dam (100.57 meters last week to 100.55 meters this week), it did not pose any danger as far as supply goes.

The President's report also said the Commission on Higher Education was continuing to process and ensure the release of the Tertiary Education Subsidy to higher education institutions, while the Department of Education was working with the Land Bank of the Philippines to market a lending program which aims to extend assistance to private schools, universities and other learning institutions.

Online learning programs for educators and other education stakeholders are also being done.

Also included in the report was information saying as of May 27, over P15 million worth of products was confiscated by the Food and Drug Administration, in coordination with the National Bureau of Investigation and the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group.